This Bear found it very strange (after doing a "search" on Cyburbian topics) that no thread ever had in it's title our "Interstate System Of Defense Highways". Interstate highways and the nation's freeway and tollway system has probably had more of an affect on "planning issues" that just about any other topic.
As I'm sure you know, President Dwight Eisenhour signed the legislation in 1956 that created the interstate system. Original plans only called for a few roads that criss-crossed the nation.....and boy did that change. They required at least one (1) mile in every six (6) to be straight.....serving as an emergency runway for military planes. The original focus was on providing the logistical access that the military would need in time of war.
State and federal highways, with all of their mom and pop businesses, suddenly found themselves with only local customers. All the through traffic was on the interstate. The interchanges for the interstates became the location for businesses that catered to travelers.
Cities and towns next to interstates florished. Those towns away from the interstates started a slow death march that continues today.
Automobiles, filled to the interior brim with.....one (1) person .....became the norm. In the 1950's you could get your kicks on Route 66 but by the 1970's the only Route 66 signs were in fixed-up basements.
Large cities started turning normal busy roads into freeways (think St. Paul or think Detroit). Our culture became a "car culture". Central cities died. Small shopping plazas popular in the 1960's were joined by large malls in the 1970's and regional giant malls in the 1980's. Transit-oriented stuff went away, except in only the largest of towns.
And on a personal note.....this Bears dad bought a mom and pop restaurant, located on what we all called "The Chicago Pike" (the state road that led to the windy town). He bought it the same year the Ohio Turnpike opened (1956). Obviously, that place, called "Country Home", didn't stay in business very long.
Bear On Chicago Pike